Portrait of Lorraine by Ellen Phillips

Lorraine sat in the corner of the Mexican cafe with the rest of the group who would be attempting to sneak across the US border with her. She was in the habit of comparing herself to others around her to make sure she was “the fairest of them all”, but these peasants were no competition. The men were nasty, of course, but the women, who should know better, had no sense of style. Their outfits were shabby at best. And even though her white roots were marring her coiffure, these poor woman had dirty brown ponytails. So 1980’s. She could see them casting sideways glances in her direction and smiling in envy. She knew she looked good in spite of the Army surplus stuff she wore beneath her layers of flowing dresses. “Eat your hearts out, bitches!” she thought.

Antique painted wooden bowl 12″ $95

The handsome leader of their group was droning on in Spanish. He was probably giving directions, but she had enough self-confidence to know that regardless of the circumstances, she would trust her intuition and know the right thing to do. Of course, she didn’t speak or understand Spanish, so she had no idea what he was talking about. Also, she was distracted by the sexy good looks of “Indiana Morales” the name she gave him. He was too swarthy to be a Jones. Her mind wandered as she imagined life on the trail as they made their way across the border. She and Indiana would be sipping chilled white wine as they stayed up late sitting around the campfire somewhere in the desert. He would be singing sweetly and strumming a guitar. One thing would certainly lead to another, and soon the chilly desert night wouldn’t be so cold. Lorraine shivered a bit in anticipation.

Ann in our new arrivals from Santa Fe: dress and under skirt

Indiana said something in a loud voice and the crowd gathered up their stuff and started shuffling towards the door of the cafe. Lorraine filled what room she had left in her Vuitton bag with sugar packets, paper napkins, salt and pepper shakers and whatever else she found on the cafe’s tables. One never knew what might come in handy. They walked out into the bright sunshine, and Lorraine thought she might faint. It was so HOT! Who said it was a good idea to layer her clothing? They had not walked 100 yards before she stripped off one of her precious dresses and threw it onto the sandy soil of this desolate place. This was even worse than a hot flash!

Handblock Clothes from Passamenterie

They walked and walked for what felt like weeks before they stopped under the shade of a stunted tree. Every so often, she stripped off another dress, but decided it didn’t help and regretted leaving behind her beautiful clothes. Lunch consisted of uncooked ears of corn and dry tortillas. Was this the appetizer? Lorraine wondered. Then they passed around a wine skin filled with tepid water. Lorraine could only imagine the illnesses she might be catching as she gulped the water. Then they were instructed to keep moving. So this was lunch? Her stomach was growling and she thought how a nice cold shrimp salad would taste really good right then. She certainly hoped that dinner would be better. 

Stangl vintage dinnerware in orange and green

Between the heat and the awful food on this trip, she guessed she would lose all the weight she had gained at the hacienda. At least there was a silver lining to this stressful trip. She thought again about her reasons for returning to the states. If she could save even one dog from the ravages of Covid-19, all this would be worthwhile. Maybe she would look for Frederick and beg his forgiveness. Or better yet she would think of a way to turn the blame so that he begged her for forgiveness. Yeah, that sounded about right.

Pair of table lamps with tin shades

As they trekked on, she could feel the rough boots rubbing on her delicate, narrow heels. A tear trickled down her cheek. She knew her feet would soon be covered in blisters. Her feet were her best feature, and she could just imagine what the techs at Cyndy’s Nails would say when they saw the state of her feet. Naturally she wouldn’t understand what they were saying, though, as they spoke Vietnamese. But it would be epic.

4 inch paintings on wood